What’s up, guys!
I’ve been trying to put together some ideas on what to recommend you to do (applicants & future KI students) during and after the application process.
It’s hard to say it easily knowing that I was in your shoes approximately one year ago, and I still remember (like if it was yesterday) how I felt. The uncertainty, the awaiting, the money resources, the housing, the “what if…” ideas, and so…
Perhaps it has to do with a character trait, or not. When it comes to await, I don’t know you guys, but I truly hate it. Yes. It is one of my main personality flaws: I’m truly impatient. I get desperate, and my mind starts getting distracted with other ideas or things, and then I feel as if I had just wasted too much of my time waiting when I could have done other things instead and bla bla bla… and this can keep going like a vicious cycle over and over again…
Buuuut (Ha! It’s funny, isn’t it? How life keeps putting us challenges to overcome them), sooner or later we all learn to wait. Somehow we end up doing it, or at least we learn on how to manage ourselves while we wait, maybe as part of a life-learning process on how to become more patient, and how to realize that every single thing in life has its own time and pace.
Last year, during these days I was getting myself all prepared to send my application to KI along with all the rest of my documents. In between work and daily duties, I finished my letter of intention, and had it reviewed by my friend and colleague, Gabriela Levin-Pick. Days later, the waiting period officially started.
Besides the tension of preparing all the necessary papers for my application, I was in the middle of a “yes-or-no” answer to make a family trip to Canada because I wanted to send my documents before I went into the trip, but for some strange reason I wasn’t sure (or wasn’t comfortable) of leaving home even when my papers were already sent, and there was nothing else left to do from home that I couldn’t have done from elsewhere (through the internet). Afterwards I realized that I was too anxious/nervous about the whole application process and response, and I thought if I’d stayed at home during the Christmas holidays I was going to be able to ease these feelings. Wrong!!! Thank God I took that flight, and made that incredible trip with a part of my family that I don’t get to see very often because it definitely made a difference in my perception. It was a great tension distractor, and I truly spent a great quality time with them.
By January I was back home, and little by little the anxiousness and nervousness ghosts tried to reappear, but didn’t succeed. Exercise, meditation, reading books about other topics, work, getting along with friends, and listening and practicing music (violin) were a few of the activities that helped me overcome these ghosts, and wait until mid-March for my application response.
One thing that I can tell you I did not wait for was to start searching for accomodation. I think I even searched for it before I got my acceptance letter. You have probably read about the HUGE difficulty that is to find a place to live in Stockholm. I would love to help you more with this yet I don’t think there’s something else to add but eager you to start/keep looking for a spot. You can begin, of course, by the University Accomodation Center AB (http://www.uac.se/). Other websites that you might want to check are:
These three might ask for a fee to search for a place, or rents could be a little more expensive yet if there’s any chance for you to share with someone, you should take that into account. Remember prices in Sweden are very high (but of course by this time you already know this).
For those of you who have already sent your applications stay positive and enthusiastic. Be confident that what will happen is the best for you, always. If you’re like me (impatient), try a few of the activities I’ve mentioned, and remember that no answer is given before the official KI dates. Keep that in mind, and hold on.
For those of you who haven’t sent your applications, there’s still no rush, but do not wait until the deadline. It’s always better to have done this before the last minute. Be cautious.
Remember that I’m not here (in this blog) just to write about me, but also to try to help you with your questions and doubts. They do not have to be necessarily about the application process, but also regarding life as a student from the Karolinska Institutet, as well as someone else living in Stockholm.
Again here’s my email address. Feel free to contact me, anytime:
Expect me again, pretty soon!